Budapest Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tours: Summarized & Compared! [2024]

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Budapest Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tours: Summarized & Compared! [2024]
Looking to book a Hop-On Hop-Off bus ticket that'll allow you to explore all of what Budapest has to offer? Make sure you're in the know of the different bus tours that operate in the city and which one to book from when we stack them up together.
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On our next stop on our Hop on Hop off bus review tour, we’re headed to Budapest! If you're short on time after landing in Budapest's Airport, you might think of buying a Hop On Hop Off bus ticket to see it all in a day or two.

While these tours can be a great way to easily get around a city and see some of the highlights, are they something that you would want to do?

Since Budapest offers Hop-On Hop-Off tours, I figure to provide you with all of the information you'll need to make that decision. Let's find out whether you should book your next Hop on Hop off bus ticket now!

City sightseeing budapest hop on hop off bus.
Image Courtesy: City Sightseeing

What is a Hop On Hop Off tour?

Hop on Hop Off bus tours do exactly what the name implies - they’re bus tours that allow you to hop on and off as many times as you’d like, as they make their way through a city. While you don’t have to literally hop on or off the bus, it does make getting around a new city easy and efficient.

Unlike a regular commuter bus, you’ll be taken straight to the famous landmarks, without you having to figure out how to get there.

Whenever you visit a new city, it can be overwhelming to try and manage it all, and Budapest is no exception. Hop on Hop off tours can help you check off all your important sights. 

Tours typically operate on a set route, and you can either ride the bus through the whole circuit, get off at the sights that interest you, or do a combination of both. You can then hop back on when the next bus comes through. 

Another thing that differentiates hop on hop off buses from traditional buses is that there will frequently be pre-recorded commentary available.

These will come in multiple languages so you don’t need to worry if you don’t speak the local language. Buses sometimes also have open rooftop seating so you can get the best views as you cruise through the city. 

Big bus tours bus in Budapest.
Image Courtesy L Big Bus Tours

BigBusTours Hop-On Hop-Off Budapest

As with many other cities in Europe, the big name in this style of the bus tour is Big Bus Tours.

Their Budapest tour runs one route (the red route), with 20 stops. The entire circuit runs for 90 minutes, with tours starting every 60 minutes on weekdays and every 30 minutes on weekends.

Tours have a pre-recorded audio commentary available in 16 languages as well. 

Here is the main route Big Bus Tours operate on.

Red Route

Frequency: Weekdays every 20 minutes

Tour Duration: 90 minutes

First bus departure: 09:00

Last bus Departure: 17:00

  1. Basilica - Attraction include the St Stephen's Basilica.
  2. Chain Bridge - Attractions include the Academy of Science, Gresham Palace, & Chain Bridge.
  3. József Attila Street
  4. Synagogue
  5. Astoria - Attractions include the Great Synagogue and the Astoria Hotel
  6. Andrássy Avenue
  7. Opera - Attraction include the State Opera House.
  8. Octogon/Liszt Ferenc Square 
  9. Heroes’ Square - Attractions include Gold Museum, Széchenyi Baths, Kunsthalle Art Museum, Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest Zoo and Botanical Gardens, Transport Museum, & Vajdahunyad Castle.
  10. Keleti Railway Station
  11. New York Cafe
  12. Astoria
  13. Váci Street
  14. Gellért Bath
  15. Castle Garden - Attraction include the History Museum.
  16. Castle/Funicular - Attractions include the Buda Castle, Funicular, and History Museum.
  17. Batthyany Square - Attractions include the Eternal Flame, Church of St Anne, & the Parliament Building.
  18. Margaret Bridge - Attractions include the Statue of József Bem, Margaret Island, & the Lukács Baths.
  19. Nyugati Railway Station
  20. Parliament - Attractions include the Imre Nagy Statue, Soviet Memorial, Ronald Reagan Statue, Parliament Building, Freedom Square, & The Ethnographic Museum.

Your Hop On Hop Off ticket can be used for as long as it’s valid, and you can hop on and off as many times as you like, provided there’s another bus coming.

Note: Bus tickets do not include entry to any of the landmarks or attractions, so make sure you purchase your tickets in advance!

There’s also a Big Bus Tours mobile app you can download so you can track in real-time when the next bus will arrive, and follow your route. This is helpful if you choose to get off at every stop so you can plan when to be back to continue your journey.

The app is available on Google Store and in the Apple app store. 

Big bus tours touring around Budapest Attractions.
Image Courtesy: Big Bus Tours

Bus Ticket Prices

If you’re interested in taking the Big Bus Tour Hop on Hop Off tour of Budapest, you’ll need to purchase tickets.

Booking online can save you 10%, but you can book tickets before boarding the bus as well. All ticket prices include free WiFi on the bus, a river cruise, and pre-recorded commentary.

Keep in mind that the prices and availability mentioned below may fluctuate. For the most up-to-date pricing, features, and availability, make sure to click the link to Big Bus Tours' official site!

Prices are as follows:

Classic Ticket (one day ticket)

  • Adult: From €29.70 (€33.00 on street)
  • Child [6-18]: From €26.70 (€29.70 on street)

Premium Ticket (two-day ticket)

  • Adult: From €34.20 online (€38.00 on street)
  • Child [6-18]: From €30.80 online (€34.20 on street)

Deluxe Ticket (three-day ticket)

  • Adult: From €38.70 online (€43.00 on street)
  • Child [6-18]: From €34.80 online (€38.70 on street)

Route map

While we’ve provided you with all the stops on the red route, it might not mean much in purely a list format. If you’re looking to see it on a map, and where the Big Bus Tour will take you, look no further!

Hop-on Hop-off bus red route in Budapest.
Image Courtesy: Big Bus Tours

City Sightseeing

If the Big Bus Tour route doesn’t quite meet your needs, fear not, there’s another option in Budapest! City Sightseeing offers another (similar) route that takes 140 minutes for the full loop, with a bus frequency of 20 minutes. 

  1. St. Stephen’s Basilica (first bus leaves at 9:00, and last bus leaves at 18:00)
  2. Chain Bridge
  3. Március 15 Square
  4. Great Market Hall
  5. Kálvin Square
  6. Anker Lane
  7. Andrássy Avenue
  8. Hungarian State Opera House
  9. Liszt Ferenc Square
  10. Heroes’ Square
  11. Keleti Railway Station
  12. New York Place
  13. Astoria
  14. Parisi Udvar/Hyatt
  15. Citadel
  16. Castle Garden
  17. Funicular/Sikló
  18. Batthyany Square
  19. Margaret Bridge (Buda)
  20. WestEnd Shopping Centre
  21. Parliament

Ticket Prices

City Sightseeing has three price brackets for their tickets, so you can choose the one which best fits your Budapest travel plans. You can purchase a ticket that includes a boat tour if you’d like as well. This tour lasts 60 minutes and departs from Március 15 Square, dock number 8A.

Click here to puchase tickets from Viator now! Select the options based on the number of days you'd like to buy the bus passes from.

Iconic - From 30.71 USD

  • 24-hour ticket
  • Boat Tour Included
  • Guided Walking Tour Included

Essential - from 35.37 USD

  • 48-hour ticket
  • Boat Tour Included
  • Guided Walking Tour Included

Value - from 40.01 USD

  • 72-hour ticket
  • Boat Tour Included
  • Guided Walking Tour Included
Budapest city sightseeing bus tours.
Image Courtesy: City Sightseeing

Looking for tickets to Budapest?

If you're still looking at flights for your trip to Budapest, make sure you're booking the cheapest flights available on the market with SkyScanner!

SkyScanner helps you find the cheapest flights available so that you wouldn't have to pay more for flight tickets and save that money for more things to do or food to eat!

Next stop: Budapest!

Whether it’s your first visit to Budapest, or it’s your favorite city, a Hop on Hop off bus tour can be a great way to see the city from a new angle (and not only because of the open-air top deck)!

It’s a quick and efficient way to see highlights of the city and to help you save time you might lose trying to figure out how to get places. 

However, if you have a bit more time, we highly recommend you join on of Budapest's most amazing and free walking tours! They're an amazing way to immerse in the cultural and historical stories of the cities, told by locals themselves.

Even if Budapest isn’t your next destination, we still want to help you travel the world. So much that we built an app for that purpose. Let me introduce to you, Pilot!

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Disclosure: Pilot is supported by our community. We may earn a small commission fee with affiliate links on our website. All reviews and recommendations are independent and do not reflect the official view of Pilot.

Miriam Jaffe Blog
Written by:
Miriam Jaffe
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